As first reported in the Tuesday edition of The Union, Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital, County of Nevada and Hospitality House have announced a partnership to expand shelter beds to house homeless county residents seeking recuperative care.

Beginning Sept. 1, a new agreement between Dignity Health Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital and the County of Nevada creates a path for homeless county residents to recuperate following medical discharge from the hospital, according to a release.

Under this agreement, up to $263,334 is being awarded to the Nevada County Health and Human Services Agency from the hospital, a California nonprofit public benefit corporation. Funds received will be used over the next three years to support the Health and Human Services Agency Medical Respite Services Program supporting the needs of eligible homeless patients upon discharge from the hospital. The county is partnering with Hospitality House to provide this recuperative care program.

Individuals experiencing homelessness typically demonstrate higher rates of behavioral health disorders, chronic illness and acute injuries, the release stated. As a result, such individuals commonly experience frequent hospitalizations and emergency department visits.

Lacking basic shelter to recover from their illnesses, homeless patients frequently find themselves quickly returning to the hospital due to inadequate recovery and rest, unstable or unsanitary living situations and inability to access primary follow-up care.

To alleviate pressure on hospital systems related to these patients, medical respite programs have been growing more popular across the nation, providing savings for local hospitals and improved outcomes and quality of life for patients experiencing homelessness.

Continue reading this article at The Union.

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